Importance of Food in Mexican Culture
Food plays an important role in Mexican culture. Like in a variety of ethnic cultures, delicious Hispanic generational recipes are a given at family and social gatherings along with occasions for celebration and traditional holidays. As in so many homes across the world, the kitchen and the kitchen table is often the most social place for people to congregate and break bread together. Preparing food is yet another way to socialize. There will always special food for special events.
Though Mexican cuisine is a blend of indigenous (Indian) and Spanish influences, most Mexicans continue to eat more native foods such as corn, beans, and peppers. Such foods are cheap and widely available. The tortilla – homemade or bought – is the basis of the typical meal.
The Mexican government provides protection for farmers by supporting the prices of agriculture products. Mexico is self-sufficient in most fruits and vegetables – they grow enough to meet the needs of the people. Still in rural areas, farmers barely make enough to feed their own families.
Though American fast food has entered Mexican diet, street stands and market stalls continue to make and sell traditional Mexican food. In Mexico City and other urban areas, dinner can be an elaborate meal eaten in one of many restaurants. (Comida (lunch) – the main meal of the day – is eaten between 1 and 3 P.M..
Food for Religious and Holiday Celebrations – During the centuries of Spanish rule over Mexico, the majority of Mexicans were forced to convert to Christianity. Christian holidays are celebrated with family. Many festivals include Native Indian traditions. During Holy week . . . leading up to Easter . . . meat is typically not consumed.